Re: on co-opting impulses towards organized religion

From: Mark Walker (
Date: Thu Jul 26 2001 - 17:50:06 MDT

----- Original Message -----
From: Reason <>
> So we have all these billions of people in the world expending their
> religious impulses and a fraction of their disposable income and time on
> religions that aren't really getting anything useful done. Looks just like
> an established marketplace that's worth entering. Never compete when you
> co-opt.
Will it be Father Reason preaching to the faithful at the Church of
As I have said on this list before, I do not have a problem joining forces
with transhumanists who have religious beliefs. Given that we are all
working towards the same goal, I think a healthy bit of pragmatism is in
order here. That is, let us bracket our differences concerning this belief
since they do not affect our pursuit of our joint goal. Don't we have more
in common with a religious transhumanist than an atheistic luddite? So, if
religious transhumanists have access to additional skill-sets or resources,
so much the better. Furthermore, this setting aside of our differences ought
only be temporary: If atheististic transhumanism is correct then the
probability of converting everyone to atheism ought to rise as our
rationality takes on a qualitative improvement as we become posthuman. On
the small chance (by our lights at least) that we atheists are wrong, then,
qua posthumans we ought to be much better at apologizing.
    It is of course ethics that stops us from adopting Reason's
proposal--but then may be he just forgot the ':)'.

(BTW, I see so many strawperson versions of religion attacked as irrational
on this list. There are some towering intellects among believers, I wish
their views would be scrutinized. For example, one luminary may be found

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